Rokugan: Shadow Creeping
Act I Intermission
In full armor, three Lion Bushi make their way down a dusty road towards Shiro Matsu. Only they are not Lion, but Scorpion! An assassin, a shugenja interrogator, and a geisha informant, to be precise. A week ago the diamyo of the Shosuro family, Shosuro Hametsu, sent them on an urgent mission to track down and find a man named Matsu Akira: a member of the mysterious Kolat. Their orders are simple: find him and bring him back for questioning, or if unable to do so, question him thoroughly and kill him. It seems Akira is the only lead left that might unravel what the Kolat are, after the murder of Soshi Yukio, the previous Scorpion agent sent to investigate.
The drought in Lion lands has taken a turn for the worse. Villages are being abandoned, and the heat is beginning to ignite the passions of conflict along the Lion-Crane border. Rumors of fighting have begun to spread, and as our Scorpion agents find on the dusty road, are not just rumors. They are ambushed by two forward scouts from a nearby Crane patrol. The Crane bushi rush at them from the underbrush, kicking up dust from the parched road, their naginata’s flashing in the sunlight. Using a secret spell from the Shosuro family, the interrogator summons a kami to confuse and disorganize the attackers, while the others rush forward and quickly dispatch them. The bodies are left to rot in the sun, but not before their blades are broken and a torn piece of kimono is left in one of their lifeless hands; the fabric bearing the emblem of the Matsu family.
Following the trail of their prey our party make their way to a small geisha house, The White Petal. There they make contact with the local Madam, and are informed that Akira is indeed within the house. A short while later screams fill the air as the bodies of three dead Lion samurai and two geisha are discovered. Among the dead samurai only Akira is identified, the other two are mysteriously unknown even though they bare Matsu family mons.